Flat Coated Retriever

The Flat Coated Retriever was developed in the late 18th Century. Due to the advancement and efficiency of shotguns, hunters found they had a need for an efficient retrieving dog to retrieve their game. To develop a dog to meet their requirements they experimented with the crossing of different breeds. Sheepdogs were used for their trainability, Spaniels for hunting skills, Water dogs for retrieving wildfowl and Setters for their keen nose.

The founder of the modern Flat Coat, Mr. S. E. Shirley, (born in 1844 and founder of the Kennel Club of England) used a proportion of these with the St. Johns Water Dog, also known as the Lesser Labrador or the small Newfoundland. The Curly Coat Retriever appeared to branch off at about this time, leaving what were then called Wavy-coats as a more or less pure breed. The Wavy-coat, however, was a reference used rather loosely, as for a time it appeared to cover several different types.

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